The Importance of Masculinity The novel “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,” by Junot Diaz, is one of the most known books about a dystopian society. Junot Diaz discusses the importance of masculinity in Dominican Republic society. Masculinity is explained as: “All men are influenced by their upbringing, experience, and social environment which play a big role in determining one’s view of masculinity and manhood. This means that masculinity is going to be different for everyone.
In a society where we fight for equal rights all over the world, one would think that the emotional freedom of men and women would not be one. Today, men are still held hostage emotionally and are unable to express themselves without ridicule freely. In the article “Toxic Masculinity,” Callie Zimmerman suggests that males face many hardships simply because they are forced to exhibit a degrading state of manhood (web). Toxic masculinity holds true by pointing out the history of this misconception and providing insight for one to relate, understand and change these views in one’s life. Men are often held to a higher standard than women with masculinity being the most important part of their existence.
However, this creates tension between hegemonic ideals of masculinity. At the beginning of Reagan’s presidency, males were considered ‘soft’ and thus Reagan endeavoured to bring back ‘traditional’ values of masculinity and gender roles and as such became the ‘masculine archetype of the 1980s’ (Vogel, 2015, p. 464-473). This hegemonic masculinity is defined as a ‘…young, married, urban…employed, of good complexion, weight, and height…’ (Brod & Kaufman, 1994, p.124; Phillips, 2006, p.407)
Using the analysis from the film we can then explore and define the ideas behind masculinity to get better insight on this. Americas idea of masculinity is defined within the film as being assertive and constantly showing your strength. I say this because one part of the film the researchers begin to show us a video of a military man and showing us the strength that this man has. They also describe how super heroes are usually packed with muscles and are trying to save the world. So, masculinity could be defined as being strong on the outside and being able to defend yourself as well as defending the people around you while sacrificing your
Society should not base masculinity with these traits since it is learned by observation and demonstration, and this leads men to disconnect their emotions. The author is trying to take away the blindfold on society's eyes because there is an injustice towards men and woman. These aspects of masculinity are how men are taught to be, but if we remove, eliminate, or ignore those aspects and misconceptions men will express their emotions openly without having to restrict themselves and be able to fit in society or at least feel like they are a part of the society. As you can see these views make men disconnect with their emotional side Jensen mentions this when he gives the example of his friend that worked on Wall Street and his friend described it as “coming to work as like walking into a knife fight when all the good spots along the wall were taken” (131). If we stop identifying masculinity as conquest, men would stop trying to be competitive, dominant, and even violent men might not need to always be on their guard to keep this appearance all the
“Masculinity as Homophobia” an article by S. Kimmel, that talks about how men these days have the fear of being judged and ranked based on their manhood. There are some arguments that the Professor mentions and uses in his article that supports his argument and some experiences from other people 's perspective in life of men over the years. The author’s main argument is about how men these days are being watched and judged closely based on how they walk, talk, eat, dress, move and look like. The author explains how the world is judging men and how it tries to take that power and that pride of being a man.
Connell states that hegemonic masculinity is likely to be established only if there is some correspondence between cultural ideal and institutional power. Using this definition the military men can legitimately make a claim to hegemonic masculinity. As service members they are agents of the state domination, legally vested with the right to use lethal force in order to maintain domination. Similarly, in the case of the Indian army, it may be interesting to see how the army personnel not only represent the ideal masculinity but also use their institutional power in order to establish their masculinity as hegemonic.
Pascoe claims that “masculinizing discourses and practices extend beyond male bodies,” and that the fluid practices, rituals, and discourses that make up masculinity can be enacted by and affect males and females, and a multiplicity of institutions (9). Masculinity and compulsive heterosexuality are immutably linked, creating a reciprocal situation in which boys will assert their masculinity to prove their heterosexual and dominant identity, as well as prove their heterosexual dominance in order to affirm their
There is a lot of pressure on men in society to be manly; however, what exactly does it mean to be manly? Though many people have different opinions, a lot of them conclude that a man has to be strong and somewhat emotionless to be considered a man. This assumption can lead to Toxic Masculinity, which is “A false idea that men are expected to be as manly as possible” (The Hard, Adrenaline-Soaked Truth About 'Toxic Masculinity, 2017). Men are forced to face these assumptions not only from those around him, but also from people he might see in Media. Media reinforces Toxic Masculinity which in turn causes men to belittle women.
a) The film argues that the major issues and problems created by masculinity occur by telling young boys to “be a man”, and using a “hegemonic” definition to define masculinity. While the film does not focus on the definition of hegemonic masculinity, the masculinity they describe is very much hegemonic in nature. The film describes hyper-masculinity that is defined by domination and aggression. The film focuses on the “mask” of masculinity, which requires boys to hide their true selves, and instead, put up the front of hegemonic masculinity. The film tries to demonstrate that if we let boys express themselves – their feelings, their fears, their issues- they would be healthier humans.
Connell argues that there are many masculinities and feminities in existence at the same time, but there are dominant patterns of masculinity, that operate at the level of the whole society (Connell 1987: 183-188). The concept of hegemonic masculinity is derived from the theory of cultural hegemony by Gramsci (1971), which analyzes the power relations among the social classes of a society. In Gramsci´s terms, hegemony means the ideological predominance of bourgeois values and norms over the subordinate classes, which accept them as normal. In this gender hierarchy,
The Oxford English Dictionary (year) defines the term ‘masculinity’ as “possession of qualities traditionally associated with men”. Some of these ‘qualities’ include dominance, strength, chivalry, aggressive behaviour, and having control over one’s emotions. It is a common perception that only female members of a society are subjected to follow certain codes of conduct – that “one is not born, but rather becomes, a woman”(Cite). The same can be applied to the case of men. The notion of masculinity forces the male members to constantly behave in a socially acceptable manner.
Masculinity (also called boyhood, manliness or manhood) is a set of attributes, behaviors and roles generally associated with boys and men. But the culture doesn’t end at the definition, it starts from there. The first thing to come to mind when the word masculinity is heard is usually a man flexing his gigantic muscles, as the word might sound to suggest, and that right there is the current culture of masculinity because sadly, in the world we live in, not everyone has a “muscular body”. So far we know the concept of masculinity, but the culture is what is truly hampering.
We need to stop generalising and stereotyping men and focus on the understanding of masculinities as a more complex model and one that not only relates to relations of power between men and women but between men themselves. Just as there are many different feminisms there are also multiple types of masculinities. The dominant from of masculinity in society is hegemony – the idealised notion of the ‘real man’ – the ‘bread-winner’, the ‘provider’, the strong, emotionless ‘power-holder’. This rigid cultural ‘norm’ has multiple pressures associated with it and has many negative effects. As Kimmel states in his paper on masculinity in global development: “Not all men are equally privileged by patriarchy, and some are marginalised due to inequalities connected to class, sexuality, ability and ethnicity”.